Catechetical Ministry

Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”— Matthew 28:19-20

The Catholic Church is to proclaim the Gospel message in such a way that it may take root in those being catechized and foster conversion to the person and message of Jesus Christ. Catechesis is an essential component of the Church’s mission of evangelization. Its definitive aim “is to put people not only in touch, but also in communion and intimacy, with Jesus Christ.” (National Directory for Catechesis #19B) Catechesis echoes the faith of the multicultural Church as it is believed, celebrated, lived and prayed. It is a gradual and lifelong process with Jesus Christ at its center. A Catechist’s vocation is to communicate the Gospel message and the teachings of the Church in a way that connects with the lives and experiences of adults, youth and children and moves them to develop a “living, conscious and active” faith. The goal is ongoing conversion and discipleship to Jesus Christ. In parishes, catechesis takes many forms:

  1. Evangelization
  2. The baptismal catechumenate
  3. Adult faith and spiritual formation
  4. Small Christian Communities
  5. Sacramental preparation
  6. Intergenerational catechesis
  7. Family catechesis
  8. Catechesis for those with Disabilities
  9. Youth catechesis
  10. Catechetical programs for children
  11. Vacation Bible Camp

Catechesis is the responsibility of the entire community and is most effective when there is a real partnership between the parish community, the family and those who serve as catechists in parish programs.

Catechetical Office

“Catechesis is so basic to the life of every particular Church, that no diocese can be without its own catechetical office.”-General Directory for Catechesis 267

“The Catechetical Office is “the means which the Bishop as head of the community and teacher of doctrine utilizes to direct and moderate all the catechetical activities of the diocese.”-GDC 265

The National Directory for Catechesis singles out the following ways in which the Catechetical Office exercises its competencies:

  1. by analyzing the state of catechesis in the diocese and identifying the catechetical needs;
  2. by developing and implementing an effective plan of action to address these needs;
  3. by providing formation for catechists
  4. by providing to the parishes guidelines and materials for catechesis, and ongoing assistance in the choice of catechetical texts, materials and the use of contemporary communications technology
  5. by organizing, establishing, and supporting the programs; structures, and groups which cause and direct effective catechesis in the Diocese;
  6. by collaborating closely with the Liturgical office especially for catechumenal and initiatory catechesis.
  7. The mission and mandate of the Catechetical Office is to provide the leadership, policy, guidelines and structures for Catechesis of the highest quality in every parish and to every parishioner of the culturally rich Diocese of San Jose.
Catechetical Advisory Board

The Catechetical Advisory Board works in collaboration with the Director for Catechetical Ministry to serve parish catechetical ministry in the Diocese of San Jose. It establishes a link between the Director for Catechetical Ministry, the Director for the Hispanic Apostolate, the Office for Parish Services and catechetical leaders in the parishes. It also links the catechetical clusters in the Diocese. The Catechetical Advisory Board advises the Director for Catechetical Ministry, the Director for the Hispanic Apostolate and the Office for Parish Services on matters relating to catechetical ministry in the Diocese and helps to establish directions and policies for catechetical ministry. It also provides a forum for discussion of mutual concerns, for exchange of information, and for collaboration on projects of benefit to catechetical ministry in the Diocese.

Catechetical Advisory Board Members
Susan Lee Olsen
deanery 2
Lisa Nakamura
deaneries 4 & 6
  Eleanor DePaz
(N) deanery 3
Tam Tran
at- large
  Rose Pucan-Meagor
2 year (At-large)
Lupita Vital
Director of the Hispanic Apostolate   
  Sandra Torres
Associate of the Hispanic Apostolate
Barbara Zarka
deanery 7
  Patrick DeLorenzo
deanery 5
Sr. Mary Margaret Phan
Vietnamese representative
  Wendy Scherbart
Director of Catechetical Ministry